Jon Burlingame is the nation’s leading writer on the subject of music for films and television.
He writes regularly for Variety and, over the past 30 years, has also written on the topic for such leading newspapers as The New York Times, Los Angeles Times and the Washington Post; and such magazines as Premiere, Emmy and The Hollywood Reporter.
He is the author of five books: the new Music for Prime Time (Oxford University Press, 2023), a history of American television themes and scoring; the award-winning, best-selling The Music of James Bond (Oxford University Press, 2012); the film-composer encyclopedia Sound and Vision: 60 Years of Motion Picture Soundtracks (Billboard Books, 2000); the television-music history TV’s Biggest Hits (Schirmer Books, 1996); and the Hollywood studio-musician chronicle For the Record (Recording Musicians Association, 1997). He is also the co-author, with UK writers Geoff Leonard and Pete Walker, of Music by John Barry (Windmill Books, 2021), a comprehensive look at more than 40 scores by the distinguished British composer. He is also the host of For Scores, a monthly podcast devoted to interviews with film and TV composers.
For more than 25 years, Burlingame has taught film-music history courses at the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music. He has lectured on film and TV music over the past 30 years at locations around the world.
As a producer, Burlingame is responsible for four volumes of music from the classic spy series The Man From U.N.C.L.E.; another of music from Dr. Kildare (both on the Film Score Monthly label); an award-winning 6-CD box set of music from Mission: Impossible, and a 4-CD box set of music from TV’s The Wild Wild West (both sets on La-La Land Records). More recently, he’s been responsible for a series of albums of music from Quinn Martin television shows of the 1960s and ’70s. He has also written, produced and hosted a series of radio specials on great film composers for Classical KUSC in Los Angeles; and has produced a series of short YouTube videos on film music.
He began his career as a reporter and critic for daily newspapers in upstate New York. He moved in 1986 to Los Angeles, where he now lives with his wife, producer and music historian Marilee Bradford (and their two dogs, Petra and Augie).